Push through

Today I was determined to go to Point Pinole. The weather is beautiful. We've been inside and on schedule and on screens and listening to baseball all week. Some time outside was needed.

My kids had other ideas. They whined. They complained. They cried. They said Point Pinole was boring and it's too hot and it's too cold. I drove there anyway. I was determined.

In the parking lot I just opened the doors and said nothing. In my head I was screaming and feeling all kinds of things that weren't calm or patient. But I kept my mouth shut and waited. Five minutes later they were out of the car, finding acorns under the young oak trees, wanting to play hide and seek. We walked up to the bridge, found signs of construction, saw about 8 Amtrak trains cruise by, dug for clay at the playground, and set up forts on the beach of San Pablo Bay.

Going outside with kids isn't always easy or all smiles. But sometimes we need to push through the whining, the sore arms of carrying the kid who won't walk, or whatever other obstacle comes your way. Good stuff is on the other side of all that.


We are Outside Kids

I often say that I consider an Outside Kids outing a success if my family is in the car at 10am and on our way to some big and open space with trees and frogs and hopefully a creek. Whatever happens after that is just icing on the cake. We're going outside and that's my goal.

Another measure of success - not that I'm into measuring or metrics or anything - is you. When my family of four arrives at a parking lot next to a big and open space, you are there. Sometimes it's a small group. Sometimes there is a lot of you. But you're there. My kids are not alone in their explorations of their world. 

Something really cool happened at our outing to Redwood Regional Park this past weekend. Well, two things. First was that there were over 40 people there! Some moved fast and some moved slowly and we all breathed in the air of the redwood trees. Second was that I overheard a friend of one of my friends tell her friend all about Outside Kids. This group of people going outside together is getting bigger.

And all of that - all of you - make me very happy.